Riddlebarger: The Promises Are Yes And Amen In Christ

Amillenarians hold that the promises made to Israel, David, and Abraham in the Old Testament are fulfilled by Jesus Christ and his church during this present age . . . The millennium is the period of time between the two advents of our Lord, with the thousand years of Revelation 20 being symbolic of the entire interadvental age. At the first advent of Jesus Christ, Satan was bound by Christ’s victory over him at Calvary and the empty tomb. The effects of this victory continued because of the presence of the kingdom of God via the preaching of the gospel and were evidenced by Jesus’s miracles. Because of the spread of the gospel, Satan is no longer free to deceive the nations. Christ is presently reigning in heaven and will reign during the entire period between his first and second coming. At the end of the millennial age, Satan is released, a great apostasy breaks out, the general resurrection occurs, Jesus Christ returns in final judgment for all people, and he establishes a new heaven and earth.

Kim Riddlebarger | A Case for Amillennialism: Understanding the End Times, Expanded Edition (Grand Rapids, MI: Baker Books, 2013), 40.


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    Post authored by:

  • Tony Phelps
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    Tony grew up in Rhode Island. He was educated at BA (University of Rhode Island) and Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary. He worked in the insurance industry for ten years. He planted a PCA church in Wakefield, RI where he served for eleven years. In 2015–18 he pastored Covenant Reformed Church (URCNA) in Colorado Springs. He is currently pastor of Living Hope (OPC). Tony is married to Donna and together they have three children.

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5 comments

  1. I am undecided on this topic and trying to figure it out, here is a partial list I read once of the activities of Satan and it surprised me he held so much power. The reign of Christ (if it is a thousand years) described in the Bible (Isaiah and other places) seems much different than what is described above.

    He is “the god of this age” (2 Cor 4:4).
    § He is “the ruler of this world” (John 12:31).
    § He “prowls about like a roaring lion” (1 Pet 5:8).
    § He tells lies (John 8:44).
    § He tempts believers to sin (1 Cor 7:5; Eph 4:27).
    § He disguises himself as an angel of light (2 Cor 11:14).
    § He seeks to deceive the children of God (2 Cor 11:3).
    § He snatches the gospel from unbelieving hearts
    (Matt 13:19; Mark 4:15; Luke 8:12; cf. 1 Thess 3:5; 1 Tim 1:20; 4:1–2).
    § He takes advantage of believers (2 Cor 2:11).
    § He influences people to lie (Acts 5:3).
    § He holds unbelievers under his power (1 Jn 3:8–10; 5:19; Eph 2:2; Acts 26:18).
    § He torments the servants of God (2 Cor 12:7).
    § He thwarts the progress of ministry (1 Thess 2:18; Rev 2:10).
    § He seeks to destroy the faith of believers (Luke 22:31).
    § He wages war against the church (Eph 6:11–17).
    § He traps and deceives unbelievers (2 Tim 2:26).
    § He holds unbelievers captive to do his will (2 Tim 2:26).

    • Grant,

      All these are true, but all these affirmations are also within the sovereign decree and Providence of God.

      I know that you know better, but I don’t want to leave readers with the impression that scripture is teaching a Manichaean dualism whereby there are two coequal powers in the world dueling.

      But yes, scripture attributes an array of activities to the evil one and his power, subordinate though it is, is to be respected.

  2. Isn’t the battle against ‘the church’ in “this last hour” waged by “the beast” from the sea (Rev 11:7; 13:2, 7) and the false prophet from the land (Rev 16:13; 19:20) who have been given power by Satan before he was chained by our Lord.

    “We are engaged in this spiritual warfare, locked in mortal combat against a foe whose strength and cunning are intimidating . . . .Yet our foe has been defeated decisively by the One who came in weakness, . . . The Lamb whose blood overcame the dragon on behalf of all those who hold the testimony of Jesus.” (D.E.Johnson, Triumph of the Lamb)

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